Thursday, May 23, 2013

Juice Feast a'la "Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead" movie

I recently did a seven day juice feast (ingesting just water and fruit/veg juice) as inspired by the Australian movie. I felt great, was not hungry until the last day or so (which is why I decided to begin eating again), and my appetite has been for much healthier foods ever since. I did get myself ready by staying off caffiene and eating mostly whole foods (soups and salads, fruit, etc) for a week before doing it so I recommend that to avoid "detox" symptoms during the first few days. You can view the movie free on hulu and there are three, five, ten, etc. day programs on the movie's "reboot" website. Those programs include juicing AND eating if you are worried about doing a juice only regimine right off the bat.

This page links to the free movie on hulu and the reboot program:

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

veganic gardening

Well, Spring is here in Maine, tho things haven't yet gotten as warm as I would like. But you can really see the lush green coming out in the forests and fields. And to a lessar extent, the gardens. It is still seedling season and one sees mostly ploughed and rich, black dirt across the countryside - perhaps with a speckle of baby greens.

My mom is a consummate gardener. I'm more of a consummate eater. Therefore we partner in planting and cooking of local fresh produce. I buy a share in a CSA (community supported agriculture) also to support my raw food and juicing habits.

Working on getting the raised beds set back up this year, I helped mom do a run to Lowes to get soil and compost. Though we did buy organic, I became chagrined at how ALL the fertilizers were animal or animal feces based. Even the mushroom fertilizer is a mix of materials that mushrooms grow in, which includes animal products.

Next year I would like to get on the ball and really try to go veganic in the home garden. Veganic is, as it sounds, both organic and vegan. I do have a worm farm to compost my scraps and pulp from the aforementioned raw food and juicing. Therefore I have some veganic compost but not nearly enough for our crops. It will be a process and I'll let you know how I'm doing next year. For now, here is a link to veganic resources if you would like to learn along with me:

Volunteer Day at Peace Ridge Sanctuary

This weekend Gwen, her kids (Blade, Autumn, Azize), and I attended the volunteer orientation and project day at our local farmed animal sanctuary. Peace Ridge Sanctuary is only about a mile from my house and I am so happy about that!

Peace Ridge is a vegan sanctuary that follows the models of great farms like Catskill Farm Sanctuary or of course "the" Farm Sanctuary in New York and CA. Like these other organizations Peace Ridge shelters pigs, chickens, geese, turkeys, goats, sheep, rabbits, and probably some others I'm forgetting. They also rescue dogs and cats, expecially from kill shelters. In fact they bring dogs (I'm not sure about cats) here from gas chamber states in the American South.

We had a great day meeting all the animals, eating vegan lunch, and doing some work. We cleaned the goat barns and field and also painted a fence. It was a beautiful day and I highly recommend similar adventures if you can find a farm animal sanctuary anywhere near you! If there are none, you can at least support any of these programs online and get the feeling you are really helping the animals.
Nibbles the goat (aptly named)!

geese and ducks raising the alarm

turkey sisters


cleaning the goat stalls

nice and clean!

...and being broken in again


Beltane, Temple Classes

Happy Spring everyone! Time is flying by and, while I'm glad winter is over, I wish the warm weather would go by a little more slowly.
Gwen and I (and her kiddos and my mom) had a great time at Maine's Beltane and the Beach (Popham Beach). Hopefully we will get some pics up soon.
In the meantime, our first cycle of classes for the Priestess/Priest in Training (PIT) program at Temple of the Feminine Divine is complete. Below is a quick newsletter article I wrote for the temple. I hope to post more soon. In the meantime, enjoy the sun where you can find it!

The PIT Class of 2015 has just completed our first, twelve week set of sessions. We are a big class (about fifteen people), so we have the pros and cons of that size group. On the one hand, there is always lively discussion and energy in the room. On the other hand, our check in’s and closings can take up a lot of time. We still enjoy this opportunity to hear from each other, but the challenges come in trying to fit in our sophias, goddesses, and experiential work while still leaving time for meaningful questions and discussions.

Partly due to blizzards which cancelled a couple of our sessions, we did double classes twice (six hour sessions). This had pros and cons as well. We had more time to get our whole agenda done on those days, but it was a long session and some of us found it draining. Either way you slice it the sessions passed very fast and we were sad to say good-bye to each other (at least in terms of our class sessions) so soon.

Over the twelve weeks we had many wonderful sophias. They included movement of energy, the meaning of the pentacle, drumming, chant/sound, and reiki. We discussed traditions like Native American, Wicca, Norse, and Green Wicca. For goddesses we discussed many including Isis, Artemis, Danu, Arachne, Yemaja, Kali, and Persephone. The people who did altars brought wonderful creativity to their designs.

Since our class is large, it is no surprise that there is diversity in the room. We are all different types and have all sorts of different ideas. Perhaps that is the most exciting part of the sessions, and the journey that we find still ahead of us in learning about our individual and collective spiritual paths together.